Shuga' Mommas

Shuga’ Mommas: French Onion Soup

It’s Autumn in Oxford.

I have been absolutely wishing Summer away this year. I’ve been ready for Autumn since June – I love the cool nights, chunky sweaters, falling leaves, and scrummy apples. However, I do not love gale force winds, torrential rain, or walking to work in gale force winds and torrential rain. I take it all back. Please, Summer, come back. I promise to love you right.


With this wonderful stay-inside kind of weather, I began to think about soup. A friend of mine sent this French Onion Soup recipe to me awhile ago, but I hadn’t had the chance to make it. Since we were inside most of the day on Sunday, I decided to try it.

Oh my.

It was heaven in a bowl. I’m not a huge fan of French Onion Soup, but this recipe was to die for. If you need a yummy-stay-inside-kind-of-weather soup, then make this. I promise you won’t be disappointed.

A couple of notes:

1. Use a good quality bottle of red wine to put into the soup. More than likely, you’ll want to drink the rest with dinner.

2. This recipe will take a full two hours to prepare. So, be prepared to spend some time in the kitchen.

3. I know gruyere cheese is a bit pricey in the USA. Trust me, it’s worth paying the extra $. It makes the soup.

4. You can make this recipe gluten free. Use gluten free flour, and either make or buy a gluten free french baguette. Or if you want to make french bread, some good recipes here: Gluten Free on Shoestring or Gluten Free Goddess.

What’s your favorite soup to eat during Autumn?


Shuga' Mommas

Shuga’ Mommas: Red Wine Chicken (an anti-recipe)

Written by Tori – a former graduate wife

This dish is so easy and delicious.  I really can’t call it a recipe, because you can adjust all of the measurements and even the ingredients to your particular taste.  It is great to make for guests, or for a treat when your hubby needs a break from the studies.  We love it!!


  • Two boneless chicken breasts, split down the middle (sliced while standing on one side, so you now have four thin cutlets), and sprinkled with salt and pepper.
  • Heat couple of Tablespoons of olive oil in a pan, and brown the chicken on each side.
  • Slice half of a yellow onion and two large cloves of garlic, adding to the pan with the chicken until the onions begin to soften.  If you like mushrooms, this would be a great time to throw some in as well.
  • Sprinkle the top of each chicken breast with around a 1/2 Tablespoon of brown sugar, and then add around 1 cup of red wine (I used a malbec, which was delicious, but you don’t need anything expensive!  I do not recommend “cooking wine”, but any cheap wine that you would actually drink is perfect).
  • Baste a little of the wine and onions over the chicken, cover, and let simmer for at least 15 minutes.  Give it a taste, adding more salt and pepper as needed- or maybe you want a little more brown sugar!  Be careful- it gets sweet quickly!
  • If you want the sauce to thicken up remove the lid to help it reduce down, or whisk in a teaspoon of cornstarch.

Simply boil some pasta, and when it has about a minute left, toss in fresh broccoli so that it became bright green and crispy-tender.  Drain it, cover it with butter and salt, and pour the chicken and wine sauce over it all.